The Sir Henry Dryden collection is located in Northamptonshire Central Library. It includes thousands of Dryden’s drawings, plans, and notes that were presented to the town of Northampton after his death in 1899, by his only daughter, Miss Alice Dryden. Dryden’s work includes studies of buildings and historic sites and monuments throughout Britain and Europe, occasionally providing the only record of structures that have not survived.

The collection is available on microfilm. Originals can be viewed only on application to the Northamptonshire Central Library Manager. ns-centlib@northamptonshire.gov.uk

Sir Henry Edward Leigh Dryden, Bart., was the eldest son of the Rev. Sir Henry Dryden of Canons Ashby. Born in 1818, he was later sent to Shrewsbury School under the celebrated Headmaster, Dr Samuel Butler. On the death of his father in 1837, he became the owner of Canons Ashby. Dryden was an enthusiastic archaeologist, antiquary and draughtsman. He is particularly remembered for his skill and accuracy in producing thousands of architectural and archaeological drawings. Although Dryden travelled throughout Britain and Europe making notes and drawings, he still retained an interest in local matters. He was one of five members elected on to the first Northampton Museum Committee. He remained connected to the Museum, notably as Honorary Curator of Antiquities, Costumes and Leather Work, until his death in 1899.

In addition to the items listed on this site, you can search the Northamptonshire Libraries and Information Service online catalogue for books and articles by and about Henry Dryden.